Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Spy Kids 2 3D

It was difficult to appreciate the target audience for Despicable Me other than young girl girls yet the film banked $543 million on an investment of $69m ($474m) and is therefore not surprising that a sequel is due in 2013.  Rio came next making $390m more than its budget while Rango where the outlay was the highest $135m failed to double the investment with a take of $245m ($110m). I was not surprised that Spy Kids 2 at a cost of $38m only grossed $120m (82M)

I found Spy Kids 2 3D the least enjoyable and failed to pay close attention. The film mixes real adults and children with computer aided graphics and starts off on the premise, (I have not seen Spy Kids 1) that the  USA Security Services have established and trained children as James  Bonds style special agents. The second premises are that two sets of children compete against each other for assignments egged on by their respective parents. When  the precocious brat of the President sabotages a thrill ride at a theme park to grab attention for herself, the two sets of children  compete to rescue although given  the waste of  resources  I started off by wondering why bother and hoped the President would be censured for misusing national resources.

The parent of the obnoxious boy agent manages to fix the computer system to get himself appointed the new head of the service instead of the parent (Antonio Banderas) of the nice spy kids and the new head also takes out of service Banderas son after blaming the boy for something his own son has done. The problem is that the son’s sister has a crush on their effective enemy.

The reason for the double dealing and subterfuge is a device which shuts down all electronic devices the possession of which enables the holder to rule the world. The device is held and used by a mad scientist to protect the island where he lives and created miniaturised animals with a view to creating a market for these world wide for children in the form of miniature zoos. The problem is that he has become a prisoner within his own compound because of an earlier failure in which he got the process wrong and created super monster creatures which includes a flying pig.  In a spin off from one of the  Pirates of the Caribbean  films there are also aggressive  fighting skeletons ( although why is not explained) and this leads to both sets of spy children ending on the island as their power cuts out and with no communications except of a tracking device fitted to the tooth of the son of Banderas.

They have various adventures before Banderas and his father Ricardo Montalban set off to find their children not knowing that the island is cloaked so when the children get their the signal disappears. The children persuade the mad scientist to risk venturing out where because he created the creatures they do not attack him and the special cloaking device is switched off and destroyed. The spy boy’s sister realises at last the wickedness of the son of their rival and helps out to stop the boy and they all return to the USA.

The father becomes head of the service with the children reinstated and there is a final sequence over the credit which suggests a possible direction for the next episode.

Despicable Me

Despicable Me is another computer animated 3D film with a kind of Scrooge subject. A super villain uses his suburban home as the base for his partner (Russell Brand) to use thousands of yellow minions to prepare their schemes in subterranean wokings. The super villain is beaten by a rival to stealing the Great Pyramid of Giza and his vanity threatened the super villain decides to embark on a long standing  wished for project to shrink the size of the moon. This plan has been long opposed by his mother (Julie Andrews) as foolhardy as well as costly. In order to finance the project he approaches the Bank of Evil for a loan which is offered conditional upon the villain gaining access to the Shrink Ray first.

The supervillain and team are successful in the mission only to have it stolen from them by the rival who took the Great Pyramid. Three orphan children are required by the orphanage to earn their keep by making and selling cookies door to door and while observing the secure compound of the rival  he sees that the girls are able to enter to sell their merchandise.  He therefore devises a plan which first involves adopting the girls only to find they  quickly become demanding, trusting and at an times endearing handful.

After using the girls to get the ray back he decides to take them to a local theme park as a reward with the intention of leaving them there but enjoys the day and to his own surprise takes them back to his home. He agrees to attend the concert at the Ballet school in which the girls are going to perform.

The villain then goes to the Bank only to be refused discovering that his rival is in fact the son of the Bank owner.  Depressed the villain is brightened up when he girls offer to give him their savings and he is able to go ahead with the plan and goes to the moon by rocket and shrinks the moon returning to earth in time to attend the concert. Unfortunately he does not make it and then discovers that the rival has kidnapped the girls. He will trade the girls for the moon but reneges and flies off in a rocket with the girls and the moon, unaware that the shrink effect will quickly wear off.

The villain, his assistant and team manage to rescue the girls from the space craft just before it explodes as the moon reaches is true size and leaving the rival marooned on the dead planet. The villain readopts the girls who perform the routine he missed with his mother Brand and the minion also watching.


Rango was awarded the best animated film Oscar at the 84th Academy Awards and has a Johnny Depp voice over as a pet Chameleon who rather like Blu is travelling from one destination to another when an accident results in finding himself in an unexpected location (he falls off the roof of his owner’s car). On the road in the desert he finds an Armadillo (Alfred Molina) who is on a quest to seek the mystical spirit of the West. He is given directions on a nearby town where he can find water with water being a  key issue in the film.

Rango has an early confrontation with Bad Bill (Ray Winston) until a hawk chases the man off and then turns its attention to Rango who unintentionally kills the hawk with whom he had a earlier confrontation while making his way across the desert to the town. The town officials are so pleased with this result that Rango is appointed Sheriff although the populace is concerned that without the hawk, they are at the mercy of Gunslinger Rattlesnake Jake.

Before reaching the town Rango has met an Iguana called Beans played by Isla Fisher who guided him into the town and expresses concern on finding out that the town’s water supply is kept in the bank because it is running out. She asks Rango to investigate the situation. Later Rango makes an unwitting mistake giving directions to a trio of creatures for the location of the bank and they steal the water supply overnight, Rango organises a posse and they discover the bank manager dead from drowning. There is a protracted chase between the posse and the robbers and their friends until they discovered the water stolen water container is empty. The thieves are brought back to town for trial but the whereabouts of the water remains unknown.

Rango then learns that the Mayor has been buying all the land around the town. The Mayor says that his purchases are part of a plan to build a new town but his story is challenged with the result that the Mayor brings rattlesnake Jake into town (Bill Knighy) who is able to demonstrate that Rango was not the killer of the hawk but the death had been accidental. Disgraced before the towns people Rango is driven off into the desert on his own.

Rango then meets the Spirit of the West who inspires Rango by saying that no man can walk out of his own story. This of course is not true and should have only gone as far as saying that no man should walk out of his story unless with good cause or words to that effect. There are a number of situations where inaction, walk away, accepting circumstances, is appropriate and at times heroic.

Rango with help eventually finds that the Mayor is the villain for having cut off the town’s water supply diverting for the construction of the new town. There a duel between Rango and Rattlesnakeduring which supporters of the robbers attempts to free them. However Bean is captured by Rattlesnake and forces Rango to surrender but Rango finds a way to break free and in turn Rattlesnake discovering he has been used by the Mayor takes him into the desert for revenge. With the water supply reconnected Rango is recognised as a hero by the town again.

Rio 3D

Of four computer animated family films in 3D experienced over recent months I vote that Rio is the best because it satisfied the childhood wish that animation should be colourful, engaging and different. The film is full of standard characters, heroes and villains with whom young people can either identify or condemn without having to give great consideration, allowing them to wholehearted give in to their feelings.

Blu is a Blue Macaw who before he has learned to walk is captured in the Brazilian Rain Forest close to the capital city and flown to the USA to be sold. However before reaching its destination, the vehicle is involved in a jolting stop, the rear of the vehicles open and the single container holding the macaw drops out unbeknown to the diver and is found by a geeky young girl who on discovering the bird immediately adopts and is allowed to do so without question from parents and authorities, presumably because the thieves and importers did not report the loss,

The girl grows up as the owner/manager of the local book store with her companion the bird who she treats as a best friend. The bird has not learned to fly but is agile in terms of walking and climbing. One day out of the blue (pun intended) a geeky young man arrives from the Brazil endangered specie protection unit having discovered the existence of the male macaw and wanting to unite the bird with the only surviving blue female bird which was temporarily in the care of the unit. He offers to transport the owner and the bird to Brazil and back. She initially says no but the baddies take an interest she agrees.

In Brazil while Blu is immediately attracted to Jewel, the female blue macaw she is independent and seeking to escape back to her free world. She is scathing on learning that Blu does not know how to fly and this disability is a key issue throughout the rest of the film.
The bird thieves and exporters who were originally responsible for Blu going to the USA are still at work and in the process of completing a new consignment aided by a street boy and a vicious rogue Cockatoo who participates in the capturing and acts as a terrorising jailor.

Blu and Jewel are captured and placed in chains. Her owner friend Linda and the sanctuary manager Tulio print thousands of flyers in attempt to find the missing birds, and go on a desperate personal search. The blue macaws still chained escape into the rain forest. The macaws meet up with two bird friends Blu established arrival and offer to take the pair to meet a salivating bloodhound garage watch dog Luiz with access to a metal saw. Meanwhile the bird snatch gang have approached a thieving gang of chimpanzee type of creature to locate the blue macaws,

Free for their chains the blue macaws are taken to a pre Carnival party where they are attacked by the chimps and Jewel is captured. The street boy has second thoughts about that he has done and takes Linda and Tulio to the hide out but find the place deserted, They learn that the birds are being taken to the airport but because of the Carnival aomock float has been created to enable them to progress through the capital as part of the procession. The street boy has exchanged a vehicle belonging to Tulio for a motor bike in order to get though the crowds and then the due dress as carnival participants with Linda selected to stand at the top of a float as the star attraction. This provides her with a view of the float ahead carrying Jewel and with Blu and his friends also on the track of the enemy.

All the birds are captured and despite a hectic chase by the float conveying Linda and Tulio, the thieves are able to take off in plane with all the birds. However Blu uses his skills to break out of the container and free all the birds who then release the loading bay in mid air and they all escape except Blu who unable to fly elects to remain on the plane until he releases that Jewel is injured and cannot fly. He therefore leaps off the plane and rescues Jewel and realises the freedom of flying for the first time. The Cockatoo Nigel had an unpleasant experiences in which he loses his feather as the plane crashes and the gang descended to ground by various means where they are captured and sent to jail

In the final scene Linda and Tulio are together running the rescue centre with the Blue and Jewel free to fly the skies by using the centre as a secured base with their friends. There some original songs  and tunes created for the show.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Nude Nuns Big Guns

In a piece about important cultural experience of the year 2012 I debate whether to make reference to the late night low budget (85000 dollars) Nude Nuns Big Guns. Seeing such a title while scrolling through the film channels was irresistible despite anticipating sacrilegious violence and pornography. It is about the worse example of the everything does society. It portrays Roman Catholic Clrgy producing hard drugs using half naked nuns and selling to the criminal underworld. When one of the nuns decides take revenge ion her abusers she is provided with a powerful pair of hand guns although over time he arsenal of weaponry increases and she destroys everyone in sight, clergy, nun, whore and gangster. In the final act she removes the appendage of the chief civilian. It is one of those films where you quickly lose count of the number of slaughters and topless young women. I stayed mesmerised

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Cinema Verité An American Family

The second cultural event of importance is also a film Cinema Verité, a fictionalised account of the behind the scenes of the original reality TV experience An American Family in 1973.  A decade later I argued at the Henley International management course that the development of the Internet would expand the reality experience idea in all aspects of human life and its condition, from bed room to bathroom. I did not know how right I was to prove.

The 12 part TV series caused considerable controversy after the family had been billed as the archetypal American Dream family.  The eldest son left the family to live in New York and admitted to being gay, the first such admission on USA TV. The wife asked her husband to leave and divorce after 21 years of marriage. The main controversy was on the extent to which the show could be said to be reality because of the editing of the months of filming and that it was impossible for people not to act out and react to the presence of the camera.

The film proved an engaging and impressive portrayal of the reality difference between how the USA likes to perceive itself and really is through the behaviour of the wife, Pat Loud who has invested heavily in her children, her home and local community because her husband Bill is constantly away alleging managing his business interests which enable the family to live in a large house with outdoor swimming pool and all the latest gadgets and symbols of material affluence.  In fact as she find  with the help of the TV series Director, her husband has had  a series of mistresses taking them away on holidays lavishing his time as well as money.  His children have to cope with the insecurity which the break up engenders although his financial circumstances are such that they are able to continue in their former lifestyle.

Tim Robbins is excellent and the hypocritical husband with Diane Lane as the wife. The great surprise of the film was the casting of James Gandolfini, Tony Soprano in the Sopranos as the film Director. There was no hint of the gangster in this character study barely recognisable in a beard and having lost substantial weight. The film revealed how driven by the corporate pressures for rating and the financial outlay over a million dollars, the Director had misled the couple about how they would portrayed and he had the four children, three sons and a daughter. Once they family realised how they were being shoen and the hostility which resulted they went on the offensive uniting in order to counter the reaction and explain why they had participated and what had happened. In this they were supported by the film crew, a young couple who became Hollywood film makers. They protested about the bending of ethical standards. The family were successful in this with all members gaining reputations and can be said positions as a consequence.    The eldest son Lance became something of a cult hero among the gay community and at his requested he was filmed during his final days arising from HIV infection and AIDS. His last wish was for his parents together. His father had remained and also divorced for a second time. The parents have remained together since that time living close to their children so that it can be said that far from breaking hem it has made them stringer individually and collectively. In this respect I suspect they were lucky with the parents being people of substance before the intrusion and having given more to their children than is often portrayed by family of material wealth and social standing.

The Tempest on film by the RSC in Newcastle

Three of the four cultural events in this piece cover great works of art while fourth says much about contemporary western society.

The first is The Tempest believed to be one of the comedies created by William Shakespeare an which I experienced as a stage play by the Royal Shakespeare Company on the 19th of November 1985 at the Theatre Royal Newcastle and again on Sunday May 20th 2012 as a film first released at the end of 2010 and to the credit of Sky added to their anytime films this weekend.

I remember little of the RSC production, except that Alfred Burke previously known to me from a TV detective series, participated, from the programme as Gonzalo the honest Counsellor and which also revealed that James Purefoy was Ferdinand the son of the King of Naples and Melanie Thaw (daughter of John) played Miranda the daughter of Prospero.

I very much enjoyed the film which has Dame Helen Mirren playing the Prospero, the Duke of Milan as Prospera, and a twist which made the story a more convincing one. The film kept to the text is all other respect except that it omitted the play within a play at the end, a device also used in the recently seen and reported Taming of he Shrew which I can confirm was seen in Newcastle at the Theatre Royal in 1988 and also in Oxford by a college company on the lawn on a flying visit when to be researched. Brian Cox played Petrucio in the 1988 RSC production together with Alex Jennings and Fiona Shaw (now CBE who became internationally known as Harry’s aunt Petunia Dursley in five of he Harry Potter films.

The Tempest film also brilliant portrayed the sprite Aerial and used the latest CGI to provide the conjuring tricks of the Prospera as the Sorceress. I thought the film was made brilliantly accessible to contemporary audiences and the casting of Russell Brand as Trinculo, the court jester and Alfred Molina as the alcoholic Butler. Tom Conti is Gonzallo the  old Counsellor.

The Duke of Milan and her daughter Miranda is cast adrift in an open boat by her young brother who wanted the title for himself.  She lands on an island where the native creature strong man  and work horse Caliban shows her how to survive and where she develops he skills as a sorceress freeing the sprite Ariel  from imprisonment in a tree. Both become her servants although Aerial is promised freedom for his role in bringing the King of Naples, his son, the king’s brother together with the current Duke of Milan and the Counsellor ashore after using  magic to create a great sea and fire leading to the ship appearing to be destroyed and the crew and passengers being tossed into sea and drowning.

The sight of
this upset the daughter who  since childhood and known no other experience of living with her mother, ignorant of her background and without experience of men. The idea of man being able to bring up a baby  girl as  a normal young woman is not as good as the original, understandable  for a time when young boys played the female roles. Mother reassures her daughter that all are safe and coming ashore as well as the ship which unscathed has been brought to a safe harbour. The Kings, his son and court had been to North Africa for the daughter of his marriage and father and son each believed  the other had perished on reaching the shore. Similarly Trinculo is  alone and encounters Caliban  and in turn they are found together by Stephan the Butler in a genuinely humorous diversion during which Caliban gets drunk, considers Stephano a God and swears allegiance to him breaking away from Prospera,

Prospera has three objectives  which she achieves. The first is for she and her daughter to be able to leave the Island. The second is to regain her rightful place as Duke if Milan and he treachery of her brother to be recognised and thirdly, on finding the son of the King to be a fine young man, that her daughter should marry him.

Before achieving her goals  she uses Ariel to stop  the King’s brother and her own from murdering the King and his Counsellor taken power for themselves believing the son is dead and the daughter  married and out of the way and then to put the fear of the devil into them before containing the foursome in a circle so they can be confronted with the truth and father introduced  to her daughter and give his blessing to the marriage. She also gives Caliban and the others good fright before abandoning him to live alone on the Island after freeing the sprite. I decided not to read the long  final section of  play within a play. So I do not know if its absence undermined the original concept but as a film I am sure the cutting contributed to its success and effectiveness just a Coriolanus experienced earlier in the year.

I first experienced Coriolanus in Newcastle in 1990 with Charles Dance as Coriolanus and Babara Jefford his mother. Joe Melia played Junius Brutus

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Stolen Lives

I also did not enjoy Stolen Lives the story of a detective who had the care of his son one day leaving him in a diner while going to the toilet only to find the boy disappeared with no trace. The event destroyed him and the relationship with his wife.

He is called out to the finding of the remains of a boy and at first the hope is that these are remains of his child. The remains are those of someone who was murdered 50 years before. The film is the story of how the investigation leads to finding that the man who murdered this boy is also the killer of his son. The remains are found and he child is buried and the parents are able to move on.

Everything Must Go

I did not like or enjoy Everything Must Go whose message is one alcoholic in the family is bad enough but two is a major problem but it is also a well made film. I also believe had the film been the back story of the couple it would have been more interesting how the couple met, the life they had together and how they became alcoholics and then went sober via AA. although the wife only features through the words of others. Will Ferrel plays the sales husband who gets fired one day because of the false accusations of another employee and his record with the firm despite being a good salesman. On his way home he collects some beers to console himself against the injustice of the decision rather than contact his AA sponsor who is a Detective on the local police force.

He finds all his clothes and personal possession strewn on the lawn. The cause is the discovery by his wife that her husband had got drink and spent the night with another woman. Fearing she would slide the slide herself she had turned to the detective who had given her a place to stay while she hoped her husband would sort himself out.  The husband sleeps out on the lawn, gets caught out with the lawn care sprinkler system twice, drinks a lot of beer, is told he and the belongings have to be moved with five days and he engages the help if a local teenage boy to convert the possession into an Everything must go sale.

He tries to make friends with a woman who has moved in to a house from New York following the break up separation of her relationship.  The woman’s partner visits and makes up and she returns to New York. Before then Ferrell takes her for a genuine Mexican meal and there meets the man who fired him who says that the female complainant has been exposed as someone who has made a livelihood of joining firms and then suing them because of the actions of existing staff members who she has compromised and then accused. His final comment is that he would have been able to have got Ferrel’s back had the man not stuck his Swiss army presentation leaving present knife into the tyre of his gar. The knife had Ferrel’s name and could not be taken out.

The film with Ferrel signing the divorce papers, having got sober again when his money ran out, the credit cards stopped and the joint bank account held. He is able to stay in the house until that his sold. He is ready to move on.


I now come to Frantic which has an opening which then had me engaged for the rest. A woman takes the wrong luggage at the airport in Paris which she is visiting with her husband Harrison Ford who is to deliver an academic paper. It will be remembered that at the end of my recent trip to London I took the wrong case on leaving the train at Newcastle Station. Fortunately the train ended in the city rather than continue north to the City of Aberdeen. I was also fortunate as the owner of the case  lived in Newcastle and waited at the station with his friends until I returned. When the mistake was realised in the film on reaching the hotel the airline was contacted and arrangements made to return the case as well as file a lost form in relation to that of the wife. The couple are tired from their overnight journey and Harrison has a shower after ordering breakfast and then finds that his wife is not in the room after receiving a phone call.  He goes downstairs to see if she is in the lobby, restaurant, and hotel shop and then out to the neighbouring street after a search of the hotel with the help of the management fails to find her. He goes into a nearby flower shop and a local bar when he meets a local drunk who claims to have seen his wife bundled into a car by two men. Ford goes to the police who treat it as a missing person and he gets no help from the USA Embassy after waiting his turn in a long line.

Back at the hotel he breaks into the case and finds nothing except a book of matches with the a telephone number and Christian name. He visits the club where he learns that the name has not been seen for a couple of days  and that the man is a drug dealer according to another drug dealer who thinks Ford is talking about wanting to find white power rather than a white lady! He bribes the individual to find the address of the other man and when he visits he find the man dead. He takes the answering machine tape where there are several messages by a woman in French. He is able to have these translate and learns that the female caller plans to visit so he arrives beforehand and takes her to the airport to reclaim the case.

The young woman had agreed to got to California to bring back the case without knowing its contents except it was not drugs  and without know who she was working for as the trip had been arranged by her now dead boyfriend. The action takes place at the airport and then at the flat of the young woman where for some reason he takes case with him using the roof to get into a sky light at the flat. This results in the cause of the action, a small replica of the Statue of Liberty ending in a precarious position as the case opens. They eventually find it contains a device crucial to the detonation of nuclear devices and worth several million dollars.

Ford negotiates a trade with the kidnapper for his wife where the exchange takes place on the banks of the River Seine. During the films the police, the US Embassy and the security forces show great interest and their intervention prevents Ford being killed although not the girl. He and his wife are reunited on the day he is due to deliver his paper although it is not disclosed if he goes ahead with this as planned. Frantic was aptly named and the acting of a high order so that one experienced the reality of his emotions had such a situation happened. For once the basic premises was easily appreciated. Easily done.

Film about caving

At least this film has a subject matter of some interest which cannot be said for another film whose title presently escapes me. This concerned the exploration of a very deep cave in the midst of the jungle. The basic story is one of survival against he odds when part of the large team is trapped underground because of a major change in weather conditions and have to find a way of reaching the sea through small channels in a part of the world never explored before.

The positive aspect of the film is some amazing photograph of the natural underworld. In order to stretch out what proved at times to be a boring film stock relationship issues are introduced notable that between the expedition leader and his son who is contemptuous of his father’s obsession and its impact on the family and who is required to articulate in expeditions from time to time. When push comes to proverbial shove the son elects to remain below ground to help his father escape the situation rather than get to the surface himself. The problem that arose is a dramatic change in weather conditions which swells the river which falls into the chasm and then gets to the sea by channels as yet undiscovered.

Conflict arises within the surviving group because of the steel determination of the father and expedition leader. The girl friend of his number, a mountaineer refuses to obey his commands on three separate instances which led to her eventual death. His number distressed by the situation and simmering resentment loses it and at one point abandons father and son who remain survivors. A fight between the man the father leads to the death of both although the son help his father to die more quickly than he is destined in part in order for him to survive which he does the only one of those trapped to do so.

Avalon Beyond the Abyss

A very different kind of science fiction tale is Avalon Beyond the Abyss.  An island blows up leaving a poison and a team is sent to investigate and clear up the threat to marine life. They discover a deep chasm and a large underwater cave with painted figures. A battle develops between the expedition leader and one of the team over the extent to which there is time and resources to investigate what can be seen in the cave.

Just when the leader orders the team to leave an expert arrives with the authority to investigate further and her findings appear to indicate a prehistory and the existence of either extra terrestrial to super beings. The man who presses for the work to continue dies in an attempt to explore further. The leader of the team elects to descend to the depths of the Abyss as seismic activity indicates the opening is closing.  He provides maker for the body of the tam member so it can be raised to the surface. However on reaching the depths he has an experience which changes his understanding of the balance between science and the paranormal. He encounters someone who appears to be himself and also an alive comrade whose body has been raised to the surface.

I remained confused if this made for TV film was suggesting a form of heave or a parallel universe or something else. He returns to the surface against the odds a change man. The gap in the oceans closes and with it proof of his experience. The poison stops and the marine earth is saved.

Forever Young

Another different form of science fiction is the Mel Gibson romantic film Forever Young.  He is a USAAF test pilot who is approached by his long time scientific experimenter friend to participate in a cryogenic chamber project, Gibsen has a girl friend who he hopes to marry but cannot bring himself to ask her. He is distressed beyond measure when she has a vehicle accident and goes into a coma from which she is not expected to recover.

It is at this point that the story is given the twist upon which everything else follows in that he takes the unlikely decision given what we know of him and his relationship to asks to go into the cryogenic chamber for a year so that he does not have to witness her deterioration and death, This is such a preposterous proposition as to render the rest of the film absurd. What follows is even more ludicrous as for reasons which I did not understand, the year passes and Gibsen was not reactivated. In  fact five decades pass by before two boys are temporarily  left in a vehicle on a military storage base and they enter and find the machine which they are able to restart to the extent that the frozen body of Gibsen is revealed and he is able to come to after they depart. The idea that he could have survived without the machine having energy to maintain the constant temperature is one of the many moments of incredulity.

I contrast to the two previous films there are no official records and official cover ups and Gibsen has no means of proving his identity and experience and appears to be destined to find himself in a medical establishment for the mentally and emotionally delusional. His one link with what happened is the name and address tag in the jacket of one of the two boys brothers who discovered and released him. Their mother is Jamie Lee Curtiss an excellent actress although as she aged has lost the sexual magnetism by the parts she sometimes has performed. Iin the film after their initial panic at seeing Gibsen the brothers agree to hide him in their tree house while he tries to locate someone who might be able to confirm his story. Jamie is involved in several relationships including nice medical doctor at the same hospital where she also works as a doctor, and an abusive man who when Gibsen from the tree house sees her being physically attacked intervenes, drives him off  and establishes a more open relationship with the family.

His attempt to find the scientist leads to the discovery of his notebooks kept by the man’s daughter. The problem is that Gibsen begin the process of rapid aging which he scientist has recorded in the notebooks and this requires urgent medical help. This happens after the daughter of the scientist reveals that his fiancée did not die, recovered and has become a widow after her husband died. The two women have kept in touch and provide Gibsen with the address. By this time the military has established the authenticity of the Gibsen story and the current cryogenics expert arrives with the authorities in an effort to try and help Gibsen to survive but with the help of Curtiss unknowing they have come to help him, he breaks out of the hospital and steals a plane from the local airport to reach his former girl friend before it is too late. Fortunately there is an airshow and a restored flying B 52 of the type he previously tested.

In a second piece of good fortunate one of the lads he lads who he has shown the rudiments of flying back in the tree house  also stores away on the plane ( how he does this is also not explained, and is able to help him land the craft a few yards from the cliff top door of the girlfriend.  They are able to meet up and we are left to resume that the experts are able t help him become stable at his true age so the could can send the rest of their days together. He is able to pass on the research notes to the present day researchers.  True love triumphs but little else.

Mercury Rising

A very different kind of science fiction thriller adventure is Mercury Rising. The USA has an unbreakable code which a nine year old autistic child is able to break after two of those who helped devise the code for some reason not clear to me but on which the whole film hangs decide to test it out in a puzzle magazine giving a telephone number to ring which the boy does, This results in a senior within the National Security Agency ordering the section of the boy and his parents and the two young men who tested the code via the puzzle magazine.

Enter Bruce Willis of the FBI who detects that all is not as it should be and rescues (kidnaps) the boy from the clutches of the NSA and gores on the run with him declared outlaw but has the help of a friend within the FBI. Because the boy is autistic he cannot communicate directly with Willis who enlists the help of a young woman he encounters at a coffee shop to help look after the boy while he makes some further enquiries. He remains in the dark without knowing the whys and there wherefores until the young woman friend of one of the two young men creative finds him murdered but also finds a crumpled note of a letter being sent to Willis explaining what has happened.

She fortunately is seen by Willis’s friend at the FBI when she contacts and he takes her to see Willis where he is hiding. Whereas Willis appears   willing to endanger the life of the young woman he counsels his trained FBI friend to put the welfare of his family first in limiting his involvement. However he asks the man to secret the boy in the witness protection programme.

Understandably the FBI agent is portrayed as stupid enough to arrange this for Willis and to communicate what he is doing with Willis and the girl without taking the basic counter surveillance measures. One suspects there is in a reality such rival between the official National security agency and the FBI as there has always been between the FBI and State and County police forces, endangering national security as a consequence.

Willis has gone to visit the NSA controller behind the murders who rightly accuses Willis of naivety in that what is life of one autistic boy worth against that of the national security for 200 million. How many civilians have been treated in this way in Iraq and Afghanistan you may well ask and don’t tell me one  white American child is worth  more than the hundreds possibly thousands died in friendly fire as part of the USA led operations?

When Willis goes to confront the NSA man at his home in finds the man is holding a birthday party and agreed to see Willis in his wine cellar which provides Willis with the opportunity to destroy some of his best vintages as part of making a point of forcing   the man to call of his dogs and go on National TV to admit the code can be broken, Why he should want to do this is also not clear? Why the NSA would want to kill the parents, the creative and the boy is also not justified or appears rational other than for he purposes of the film. In the finale the FBI agent friend is able to persuade his boss that the it is the NSA man who is the rogue and turns the table in top of tall building helicopter finale in which the boy walks fearlessly along the edge of the building roof to get a gun to go give to Willis which enable him to take control of the situation and the NSA man who falls to his death below.

The film ends with Willis going to see the boy who is at a special day centre and who is also fostered to see how he is doing. He brings some puzzle magazines and the kindly assistant encourages Willis to make direct contact although accepting the boy may not know who Willis now is. The boy makes eye contact and give Willis a hug. The only redeeming feature of the film is that it successfully communicates about the nature of autism and many of the young people if they also have high intelligence an make important contributions to society and can be helped to fit in better with the rest of us. However the basic premises is fundamentally wrong. OK democratic states should have principles and standards, but the main responsibility of governments is to govern in the interests of all the people with national security its core. Any constitution has to be subservient to this consideration.

Super Eight

Resisting Leveson and as tension built over sporting interests I watched Super Eight by mistake having intended to download another film from Sky Anytime. The film has echoes of ET and the Giant spider hoarding humans as food in Lord of the Rings rather than Close Encounters. A group of talented adolescents (ET style)  are into making Super Eight Horror movies back in 1979 before the digital era when school breaks up for the summer, and they enlist the help of a girl for the movie to be shot at the town’s railway station after midnight.

When they see a train coming they include the train in the filming only to witness a lorry confront the train head on. The train is derailed with dramatic effect and they narrowly escape. They approach the lorry and find the driver not only alive but their science teacher who advises them to say nothing or they and their parents will be killed. The military then move onto the town in a big way and a number of extraordinary things happen, an exceptional magnetic field which appears to destroy automotive engines as well as throwing metal all over the place, and a number of individuals disappear, while electrical power and instrumentation goes haywire.

The film is fast moving with lots of dramatic action and a crescendo of an ending, This is the basic plot. In the later 1950‘s two decades earlier a space ship crash landed from another planet with a being akin to a giant spider/bat creature captured alive although how this happened is never explained or why the authorities decided to contain in the way they did. There was a special episode of the X Files where a creature was moved by train. The space ship breaks up or down into small plastic white interlocking pieces which are carefully stored by military in containers.

The science teacher worked on the project and at one moment established a psychic connection during which he learned that the entire creature wanted to do was to gather the materials to create a tower to reassemble his space craft to return home.  Instead of cooperating the authorities imprison in order to try and learn about the creature and his space craft technology without success over the following two decades. It is not explained why the creature and his craft was being moved or how the science teacher came to know of the plan in advance and prepare for the event in order to free the alien and provide a base for it to create the tower and ship craft via an assortment of any metal coming into its orbit as well as having the power to affect electricity. The basic power appears to be that of moving objects at a distance, telepathy with humans and connecting with available energy.

There is a relevant sub plot in which the young daughter the local always getting into troubled man whose wife left home years before is in conflict with the deputy sheriff and father of the boy who did the makeup and created the models used in the film making. They have also the mother/wife who at first I thought had been the former wife of the other man and then that he had been involved in the situation at work when she had died accidentally. I failed to work out/understand this aspect. The two young people form an attachment which continues despite both parents ordering the young people not to have contact with each other.

With the creature lose and the local community terrorised without knowing what is happening, the deputy has to take over when the Sheriff “disappears” and he is the one who suspects there is more going on than the military are advising and discovers that the fire which caused the town to be evacuated was caused by them. The scientist teacher was captured alive but dying and refuses to reveal that it was young people who were on the scene. The military have the evidence from a packet of empty film and tyre tracks that others were present filming the event.

When the young heroes see the creature on the processed film and learn of the girl is taken after having a  row with her father they go back into town to search for her appreciating that the starting point must be with the school office and home of the scientist. The deputy sheriff is taken into custody when he voices his suspicions but manages to break out and enlists the help the girl’s father to search for their children. The gang discover the hideout of the creature and his food store of human’s similar to that of the giant spider in Lord of the Rings but in this instance the young hero establishes a connection with the creature who lets them go and ET like he completes the creation of a his space craft with the white pieces; A fantastic Lego which transforms magically at the top of the town of metal junk for launching before disappearing into the heavens.

While this is happening the military has sent in their tanks and rocket launchers which have gone haywire and destroyed half the town. Unlike Close Encounters the authorities are portrayed has frighten incompetent and fascist without curiosity caution and care. Parents and children are reunited among the final mayhem.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

The Messenger

The last film is the only serious, moving and well acted film of this group. The Messenger 2009 is the story of a  an individualist Army Sergeant who is redeployed after becoming a decorated war hero to the Army’s Casualty Notification Bureau. He is the junior partner in a two man permanently on call  team who tries to teach him the  ropes of detachment and sticking to their written rule book brief. The advice not to become involves appears well justified as they share in the harrowing experience of several notifications and how the two men are able to cope with the grief and hostility they witness.

Then the Sergeant becomes obsessed by a young mother and son who appears to take the news in her stride. He starts to stalk her and find ways of getting involved with her and the son. The relationship appears to have a future when at the point when she packs up and leaves she agrees to exchange contact information. The film was nominated  for an Oscar for best original screen play and for best supporting actor as the senior member of the duo Woody Harrelson. You have to be in the mood for this film.


Described as psychological thriller with Charlotte Rampling Lemming has much more to commend it although  there are  lots of unanswered questions and the main charge of pretentiousness,

The Hero (Alain Getty) accepts a new position  as a Home Automation Engineer when devised a flying security camera which can be directed from an external computer. His new  boss  invites himself to dinner with his wife(Rampling) after a successful demonstration of the device. The couple arrive very late and engage is an abuse row with Rampling insulting her husband, accusing him of adultery and then their host for being conventional uninteresting and living in an awful  small modern home.

Alain then discovers a lemming dislodged in the S bend of the kitchen sink, hence the film title. This excites the specialist  the wife consults because lemmings are unknown in France.  The creature is smuggled back from Scandinavia by the child of a neighbour and I admit I still do not understand  the significance of this to the rest of the story which is about the nature of reality and how individual perceptions can be coloured by their internal forces.

In this instance Rampling invites herself  back to their home where she commits suicide after seducing the husband.  The wife is seduced by employer and goes to live with him after the couple  have an idyllic break at the isolated great view  holiday home of the boss and his wife. Husband and wife get back together as the mystery of the Lemming is solved. Was I interested? Did I care? No.  but Charlotte Rampling had my attention as she always does in


At least I understood the plot which is something I cannot say for Kaboon which is a creation for the teenage weekend audience with  bright colour lots of direct sex talk and casual sex. The story involved a film student who sexual identity is undeclared which provides the opportunity to explore physical relationships with both sexes. All fair enough you will say if you like this kind of thing

However this is all a preamble for the main storyline which is about extra terrestrial super natural abilities in which the to main characters turn out to be half brother and sister called London(female) and Smith(the male) and who are to be saved when the cult/ group are about to destroy earth with the exploding of nuclear weapons. The  couple and others are to be saved if they reach a secret underground shelter. They fail which delighted me greatly.

Run Fat Boy Run

There is nothing to commend Run Fatboy Run even the theme that true love will triumph. Dennis Doyle is a pathetic loser who runs away from the wedding to the mother of their child. He does keep in contact with their son and it is this contact that makes him realise what he has lost when she starts to date someone else. The man is an investment banker who is running in the London Marathon. This spurs Denis to enter and train and to finisher higher that the rival. For some reason this makes his former fiancée think better of him and they get together again. God help her and her son I say.

Blue State

Now to a couple of romantic films with the  first having  an original subject which is of considerable interest to me as it combined what happened to the liberal revolutionaries society changers of the sixties and a their young people with similar values and ideals working today? As with the other films covered Blue State only works if you accept some of the initial story features. A young Democrat activist for the Democratic Party Presidential candidate makes he drunken boast on local TV that if George Bush is re-elected for a second term he will immigrate to Canada. When the election is lost friends assume he will keep his promise and when he is sent an email from a Canadian site where you Canadian men and women volunteer to marry USA citizens to enable them to become Canadian citizens and he notes the attractive appearance of several of the girls and he then loses his former job he decides that the idea is a good one. So instead of setting off on his own he first advertises for a travelling companion who shares his political and social values.

Most of the replying are men with whom he has nothing in common but when an attractive young woman arrives he is sufficiently attracted to overlooking the clues that she is not who she seems. They commence with separate motel rooms but as the journey progresses towards the Canadian border they share one room although nothing develops. He is something of a control freak having planned the journey in considerable detail including when they can get vehicles gas from a socialist based company. They each have major secrets.

He calls in on his mum and dad where the father is an extreme Bush supporting troop supporting maniac who cannot beat to listen to the views of his son and during the evening meal shortly on arrival asks him to leave. The father talks about their son other son as if he is still serving in Iraq/Afghanistan. It is only later hat we learn he was killed in action and his father has been unable to accept his death or that he potentially died for a lost or dubious cause.

The girl insists of  being dropped off just before the border admitting that she is not the young rebel with coloured hair protestor but in fact a soldier who has served in Iraq and is  due to return over seas after the furlough. She explains she is the only child of a several generation military family who given the alternatives joined up having been told she would not go into a combat area.

They arrive at the house of the organiser of the web site to find a wedding taking place and a mixture of oddballs more interested in finding a sexual partner than  because  feeling alienated by a second term Bush administration. She is not impressed by them or the Canadian society of Winnipeg or that he appears to readily go along with the plans of their mature hostess that he should marry her.

Once the two disclose their real feelings for each other they make a quick escape. She gives herself up at the border and he elects to return to the USA to await her release from custody sometime later. By then he has become a candidate for the Senate.

During their return they run out of petrol and are saved by  someone who turns out to have been a draft dodger at the time of Vietnam War and whose reflections has an influence on the couple.

Tommorow when the war began

The third in the category of Save the World films is one of two versions I have seen of the 1993 Australian book series Tomorrow when the War Began. I had seen a USA based version, possibly made for TV adaptation whose name I cannot remember but he plot is remarkably similar. It bugs me that I cannot immediately remember or find the title and info of the USA film.

The Australian film was made in 2010 with talk of two sequels and a TV series. The USA TV film had future look back to a monument marking when the young guerrilla’s had made their stand after the enemy had taken control of their local community. In the Australian version which I assume is a fair reproduction of the original novel a group of 18ish year olds decided to go on an outback camping expedition up river starting with the use of a parent’s six seater Land Rover with the party comprises an assortment of loose friends of the central two characters, two female friends one of whom has commenced a sexual affair. The three others invited include the Asian piano playing son of a local restaurant owner I suspect so as not to alienate the Asian community given that the film is about a Chinese/Asian successful invasion of Australia for living space ( a la the original Hitler justification for expanding the territory available to German speaking Aryans. The other members of the group are a local wild boy and a town girl who goes backpacking camping with her make up and cuddly slippers.

The expedition is successful as they find a small oasis at the source of the river or tributary complete with fresh waterfall. The only potential problem is a snake which reveals that the Asian is quick thinking and has good reflexes while the serious boyfriend reveals he is prone to panic and run off.  They return to the parents who loaned the land rover to find the family dog shot and the family not there and this situation is repeated at the other homes outside the town. The Internet/phone TV and radio stations are silent. This is the first misunderstanding of the approach taken by an invader. While communication would be cut at the earliest opportunity but once control was gained then it would re-established progressively to  give orders and information, The idea that such an event could occur without intervention from other nations is nonsense but will appal to  other young people as a test of how would I react in such a situation and one has to take account that thee average soldier is of a similar age to the young people who form a guerrilla band once they establish what has happened and the all the outlying population are corralled in the local showground while everyone is processed.

The group take a look at what is going on in the town at night and one is injured and fortunately they find a doctor who ha snot be interned to help. They manage to get him out and back to one of the homes after he has been treated.  In getting away the central character creates a petrol bomb which kills/injures a small group if investigating soldiers making her realises they are just as young as herself. The young man of the best friend reveals himself to be a selfish coward as he runs away leaving the two female friends in a situation where they are in great peril.  The group narrowly escape being blown up when a scouting helicopters decides there are people present at the farm. The book was written before heat seeking technology was admitted by the authorities.

The group faced with a choice between finding somewhere to live freely or take action with the obvious target the bridge for the local harbour which they subsequently learn is being used as one of the main landing areas for the invaders. The work out a way to try and destroy the bridge which nearly fails when the girls make a number of basic stupid and irresponsible errors but survive. One of their number is badly injured and is left to die with the “coward” who offers to say with her so she doe snot die alone and is presumed to have been captured as the film ends with the central character updating the video diary which forms the basis for he film as they go off to find others and continue to wage war. Hence the immediate indication of a second film to cover the rest of the book as other books in the series. The film received several awards in Australia

31 North 62 East

None of the films in this catch up in the first week of May 2012 will make it to anyone’s list of top of whatever category and time period chosen. The one which had potential and engaged my attention most admittedly stretched credulity and had some dodgy acting. The reason for my interest being the role of the personal adviser to the Prime Minister. The Adviser of the Culture Secretary please takes note.

31 North 62 east is the location of a British S.A.S unit which the British Prime Minister agreed should be murdered by the agents of the ambassador of a friendly power holder in Afghanistan who was offering an 80 billion arms deal. Unfortunately before the arms deal is signed an American Navy Seals unit takes out a position which involves civilian casualties including a close relative of the potentate. He demands the unit is sacrificed but before their location can be given they have returned to their USS naval vessel. The British SAS unit is in the area and is sacrificed so the deal can proceed with the Ambassador arranging for the location information given to the local fundamentalist terrorists/freedom fighters.

All would have gone to plan except that the commander of the unit is not killed and is taken prisoner. Apart from the role of the personal adviser the other interesting aspect of this film is not the treachery of the British Prime Minister but that the Commander is female and that several of the principal characters are also female.

She is held in captivity and repeatedly tortured to confess her guilt in the raid which led to death of relative of the potentate. Eventually the group believe the woman and her team were not involved and the information is relayed to the Potentate’s personal ambassador who tells the rebel to immediately kill the girl and keep stumm and he relays the info to the British PM who admits any leak will ruin his reselection chances while the ambassador knows his life will be quickly terminated for messing up and failing to take revenge on the perpetrators of the crime.

This is where the plot becomes more complex. The girl has a sister who was also in the army but in intelligence and with connections with the French, including a senior operative who is female and who in turn has a double agent  located in Beirut who is also a woman and who is respected by freedom fighting terrorists groups such as the one holding the British Commander.

She is able to visit the camp and confirm that the girl is alive and trade for her life with a substantial quantity of arms and ammunition. This is a bluff to enable an Italian team to take out the rebels and rescue the girl who returns to the UK allegedly having lost her memory and is suffering traumatic stress and placed in a psychiatric hospital before being discharged from the service as unfit for further duty. When is released home the ambassador with the knowledge of the British PM has paid  a female professional assassin half a million to ensure  the former officer dies in a suicide accident and soon this appears to be the position.

The sister finds out that something was rotten after the discovery at the camp of an email on the hard drive of a computer which gave the group the location of the S.A.S unit and sent to them by the Ambassador. They are able to connect the sending of the info to 15 minutes after the ambassador had met the British PM in a country Hotel. Proving the connection appears to be impossible and this where the plot becomes even more elaborate.

The sister is able to build a powerful computer system which hacks into that of the British Security services and from this learns the home location of the personal adviser/spin doctor for the PM who is also a woman and who is then kidnapped involving the use of a light plane and a commando style assault of one person, or so it appears. The woman is then infected with a snake poison which takes 40 hours to have full effect unless she reveals all when a serum is at hand. The interrogation of the prisoner is relayed to a 24/7 news platform which is then taken up world wide. The government cannot shut down the Internet system in the UK without arousing the political and media suspicion that they have something to hide. The impression is given this is a terrorist plot. The Prime Minister orders the security services to find the location of the transmission and take both women out after realising that his adviser has also become a threat.

The process of the interrogation and locating the transmission is stretched out to build up tension which is one of several aspects of the film which does not work. The sister is able to communicate direct with the intelligence service HQ and goads them when the crack unit sent find that the transmission centre is a proxy relay unit. However it does not take long for the crack special forces unit to find the location and appear to have killed the two women who are reported to have been killed in the attempt to release them, but only after the PM’s adviser has spilled the beans on International TV.  The PM holds a media conference to explain what has happened claiming that his adviser has had some kind of breakdown and was responsible for the situation (unbelievable except this is the very argument put out by the present Minister for Culture backed up by the Prime Minister that his personal adviser acted without him having any knowledge of his contact and information giving to the Murdochs. The P.M also confidently asserts that his Minister will vindicate himself at the Leveson Inquiry with the documentation also released only to the Inquiry in the first instance). The PM in the film talks of an inquiry to get to the bottom of what happened which will vindicate his actions and the cover story.

In real life that would be that.

However this where the film takes an even greater downward curve as it is revealed that the commander was not assassinated but with the help of the French intelligence and friends within British intelligence and special forces it is the assassin who dies in the car found at the bottom of a cliff. Moreover nor has the sister and the PM’s adviser died who all turn up at the press conference after he has assured the media both are dead. The PM is quickly taken away from the situation. The commander turns up at a bar to amaze her boyfriend with the quip you look as if you have seen a ghost while her sister is offered a job with French Intelligence which she takes up suggesting the ambitions of a sequel.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Captain America First Avenger

It has not been a great couple of weeks for films apart from seeing Salmon Fishing in the Yemen at Wandsworth while away in London. I surprised my self by enjoying Captain America- The First Avenger in 3D as the best of the bunch experienced. Captain America is a Marvel Comic superhero and was probably conceived out of the Charles Atlas phenomenon of a male weakling in terms of physical size, weight and strength into a power body building, selling his techniques and aids world wide.

Captain was also a weakling to with the outbreak of the Second World War attempted to enlist several times under different names always in failure until his latest attempt is witnessed by an experimental scientist Dr Eskine who is on the look out for suitable candidates for his project which is to subject an individual to a combination of drugs and electrical forces which turns him into a super soldier. The trainees are out through their military physical paces by Tommy Lee Jones (Colonel Phillips) who is preparing a support team and British Liaison officer secret agent Peggy Carter.

Previously in an earlier version of the project Eskine had used a German Nazi fanatic called Schmidt who was left with a disfigured Red Face.  In Germany with the help of another experimental scientist Dr Zola (Toby Jones) they have captured pre nuclear era type of device from which obliteration weapons can be constructed from individual being atomizers to whole cities. While he is working for the Third Reich he has a plan to use the new power to take over the world.

Unfortunately while the American young man is being changed into the superhero an agent of Schmidt has infiltrated into the project and kills Eskine just as the Steve Rogers is created a super soldier. He goes after the assassin in a dramatic chase only for the killer com commit suicide with Cyanide.

The government and the army decide to use their creation for a highly successful national buy war bonds campaign turning him into Captain America which he enjoys. However he remains upset because of what happened to the man who had given him chance and changed him and this comes to a head when while in Europe, in  Italy he learns that Phillips forces have suffered major casualties  in an effort to take on Schmidt. On impulse he singled handed goes to investigate and manages to release a substantial number of those who have been captured. He returns in triumph.

He also has found out the master plan of Schmidt who has a number of satellite stations around the world and he leads the team on successful missions to destroy or disable as well as capturing or killing those involved. Building on his image as recruiting captain America with a shield bearing the stars and the stripes. Now he is supplied with a similar looking shield except made of a special metal which makes it indestructible and which Captain America also uses as a weapon with boomerang capabilities.

They discover that the core weapon device is being transferred to the remaining control centre of Schmidt who is now acting on his behalf and Captain America and two close friends board the moving train in a spectacular move. One of the trio is Buck Barnes a lifelong friend of Rogers who looked after him when he was weakling including taking him on blind double dates. He is one of the special team captured by Schmidt at one point and rescued by Captain America. Now he is unable to save his friend who perishes falling off a carriage which hangs in a perilous position. Captain America then leads a frontal assault on the remaining stronghold of the enemy. Participating in the assault is Peggy the special British Agent, who believed in him from the outset and who help him lave the camp on the first mission against Schmidt. While the two have become close they have not become lovers and there is a moment during the finale, akin to most James Bond films in which the two disclose their love and agree to have a date, although knowing it is unlikely to take place as Captain America makes a desperate attempt to stop Schmidt taking off in a single swing wing aircraft which contains the last remaining nuclear type device heading for New York.

He manages to send Schmidt to his death and take control of the plane but only to bring it down into the artic ice. He is presumed dead.

The film commences with the discovery of a strange aircraft trapped within the ice of the artic in the present day. A discovery is made which gets everyone excited.  Captain America wakes in a room with a television showing a sport’s games from the 1940’s. He suddenly realises that something is wrong about the situation, breaks out of the room to find himself in the present day America. Staff explain to him that he has been in a state of frozen stasis for 70 years. He reflects that he late for the date.

Written like this the film appears similar to all the others of the same ilk. Perhaps it is the war time Nazi science fiction element which engaged, perhaps the weakling transformed, but I found the film more engaging than others of the kind.

According to Wikipedia over 200 million copies of the comic book have been sold in 75 countries. Sequel to thee film is scheduled for July of this year. This was also a production where the 3D enhanced without overwhelming